Looking for US equivalent

I’m looking for a new car (yep, thats a loaded statement). US-Expat living in the UK, returning to the US. Currently driving a Vauxhall Vectra '52 (Sept-2002) Elegance model. 2.2-ltr diesel. From the Accords, Astro-vans, Yukons, & misc. cars I’ve had in the US, this Vectra is probably the best I’ve ever owned. Great mileage (27-city, 42-hwy with constant fill-ups getting 48 on longer trips), very roomy, smooth at low & high speeds. Friends & family have asked if I would be able to bring it back to the US. Sadly, can’t. Even ordering & bringing back the Europe equivalent Opel Vectra would be cost prohibitive.

I’ve asked GM but the response is the Vectra is only made outside the US. Heck, its a GM product. All around, a great mass-produced vehicle. I’ve heard the Chevy Malibu & possibly the Cavalier come close but don’t come with the diesel option.

Can anyone tell me what US-mfg has the equivalent?

BTW, diesel has come down to around 1.22-GBP per liter now. Calc’d out, around $10/gallon. I’m looking forward to only $4/gallon when I get back.


At the moment there is no real equivalent in a diesel. The Toyota Prius is a best seller because of the great fuel mileage and the general room inside. The closest you can come here is the new VW Jetta diesel which is now being introduced; already on sale in Canada. It requires ultra clean diesel fuel which is now more available. The next product up is Mercedes at a much higher price.

hi i live in stockport,u.k. the saab 93 is closely related to the vectra,shares the same chassis and some engines,i dont know if you can buy a saab diesel in the usa though?but you can in england.have you considered a vw passat tdi?its a similar size to a vectra.hope this helps!

If you like the Vectra, then I can tell you that the Saturn Aura is essentially the same car, albeit without the availability of a diesel engine in the US. So, if you want the closest possible possible thing to the Vectra in the US, then the Aura is for you.

On the other hand, if a diesel engine is your higher priority, then you are currently limited to Mercedes and VW in the US. Both makes are decidedly below average in dependability for their gasoline engine cars, but it is possible that their record with diesels is better.

You should be aware that there will be much wider availability of “clean diesel” cars in the US in 2010–if you can wait that long. But, whether the Saturn Aura will have ever have a diesel engine remains to be seen. For that matter, whether GM keeps the Saturn marque alive is even a matter for conjecture at this point.

GM is in big trouble, and needs desperately to downsize and to eliminate one or more of their divisions that sell essentially the same cars, or sell too few vehicles to be profitable. The candidates for elimination are (in no particular order) Saab, Hummer, Saturn, and Pontiac. There was even some talk of them getting rid of Buick, but since it is such a huge seller in China, I think that the elimination of Buick is unlikely. Since the price of gas makes the purchase of a vehicle with the aerodynamics of a large brick…impractical, it is fairly obvious that they will drop Hummer like a bad habit. In addition to Hummer, the other marques that I mentioned are all in the “endangered” category.

The auto companies are just now qualifying the clean diesels; almost none are for sale yet. Buy a used diesel or get a gasoline car. Diesel fuel prices are stratospheric in the USA (so are the car prices), and I don’'t expect them to get closer to gas prices any time soon. If anything, the difference will get larger. The gasoline companies will have to jigger the cracking ratios between gasoline and diesel until the market saturates with diesel vehicles. You will pay the price, no matter what it is. It’s a big risk, and you will almost certainly lose.